oppn parties GDP: Brakes on Economic Recovery?

News Snippets

  • Crude prices fall sharply as Saudi Arabia assures normal production in a few weeks. Prices fall by 5.4% to $65.30 per barrel
  • Sensex tumbles 700 points over fears that rising crude prices will deal a body blow to the tottering Indian economy
  • As Rajeev Kumar fails to appear before the CBI despite several notices, the agency forms a special team to locate and apprehend him
  • S Jaishankar says Pakistan is not a normal neighbour and its behaviour is a "set of aberrations"
  • External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar says PoK in Indian territory and the country hopes to have physical jurisdiction over it one day
  • Barasat Sessions court near Kolkata rejects Rajeev Kumar anticipatory bail application citing lack of jurisdiction as the reason
  • PM Modi celebrates his birthday with Narmada aarti and later has lunch with his mother.
  • All 6 Bahujan Samaj Party MLAs merge with the Congress in Rajasthan
  • Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee to meet PM Modi on Wednesday, state issues on the agenda
  • Pakistan to open Kartarpur corridor on Nov 9
  • Rajeev Kumar, ex-police commissioner of Kolkata and wanted for questioning in the Sarada scam does not appear before the CBI despite the state administration requesting him to do so
  • Supreme Court asks the Centre to restore normalcy in J&K but keeping national interest in mind
  • As Trump accepts the invitation to attend a programme in Houston with PM Modi, India rushes to settle trade issues with US
  • After drone attack on Aramco's Suadi Arabia facility, oil prices jump 19% in intra-day trading causing worries for India
  • Imran Khan raises nuclear war bogey again, says if Pakistan loses a conventional war, it might fight till the end with its nuclear arsenal
Sunni Wakf Board and Nirvani Akhara write to the Supreme Court for a negotiated settlement to the Ayodhya dispute
oppn parties
GDP: Brakes on Economic Recovery?

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
The signs of economic recovery in the first quarter of FY 2018-19 are showing some signs of reversal, although that may be due to temporary factors like rising oil prices and the weakening rupee. GDP grew at 7.1% in the second quarter (July-September) this year, compared to a robust 8.2% in April-June. Agriculture, manufacturing and mining faltered to bring down the figure. The gross value added (GVA) in agriculture, forestry and fishery grew at only 3.8%, down 1.5% from the last quarter. This was mainly because kharif-season foodgrain output grew at a mere 0.6% compared to 1.7% in the last quarter. This situation is not going to improve in a hurry as there has been below-normal rain this monsoon resulting in lower rabi sowing (shortfall is estimated between 8 to 10% till November). That is going to deepen the distress in the farm sector and weaken the demand for goods in the hinterland causing a cascading effect on all sectors. Manufacturing, on the other hand, nearly halved from the last quarter posting an expansion of just 7.4%, down 6.1% from the 13.5% posted in April-June.

The only bright spot is the rock-solid gross fixed capital formation (GFCF) that measures gross net investment in the economy. It grew at 12.5%, up from the 10% registered in the first quarter, and was 32.3% of the GDP. There has also been a revival in the non-food bank credit. These are encouraging signs for the economy as demand for investment is obviously generated by hopes for future demand for consumption. But the government must put a leash on its spending on non-essentials. The figures for fiscal deficit show that it has ballooned to gobble up the entire budget estimates for the full year in the first seven months. Despite assurances by the finance minister, there is no way the government can keep it down to 3.3% of the GDP. General elections next year, along with uncertainties in global trade, means economic management has to be at its best if the economy is to revive.